Mental illness is a thief
She stole his music, his intellect, his kindness
Carelessly discarded his dreams on the Bothell Highway
The shreds tossed in back of a police car
Shackled legs, shackled wrists, shredded identity
Mental illness is a thief,
and all the kings horses and all the kings men
Can’t put my child together again
Mental illness is a thief, a vile criminal
Yet my son and I serve the time
Consecutive death sentences
With no chance of parole
The lights on the going up stairs are confused
they’re off at the bottom
they’re off at the top
which way is up
which way is down is anyone’s guess
The chaos descended, I believe,
on Saturday morning
although it seems
the chaos wasn’t noticed until Saturday evening.
I’m sure it was Saturday.
there was light and laughter
all was right with the stairs, the lights,
And I knew, was confident I knew,
which way was up
which way was down
Funny, but since Saturday
and the light failure and the library silence
there have been other anomalies
The music stopped playing
The coffee has refused to percolate
and no one has been holding hands
It’s limbo land
a state of suspension
like waiting for Godot
and waiting for Beckett to explain Godot
Or sifting through a dream
where it’s Friday in Jackson Town
People dance on pepper sprout pony kegs
But Godot hasn’t shown
and it’s not Jackson Town
and the lights can’t remember
which way is up
which way is down
since you left
So lovely to know
you’ll be home tomorrow
restoring calm to chaos
The porch light will be on
my coffee cup will be ready
music will play
and we’ll dance with Godot
on pepper sprout pony kegs
I love your exclamation points!
They are you, passionate, playful!
You are not a question mark!
There can be no question of your considerable charm!
You excite me, period!
So please hurry home and exclamation me! Continue reading →
Okay. I’m not really allowed to say what I’m about to say. In public, we people who are mentally ill are supposed to hang our heads and only speak of our challenges as things we want “fixed” for fear of folks accusing us of “glamorizing” our condition. We’re supposed to declare that our way of being is dangerous and wrong and everyone else’s way is better and we are supposed to want to join the troops and fall into line. And so those who love us are confused and angry when we are resistant to getting help, to taking our meds, to being “cured.” Every other sufferer of a disease wants to get better, why don’t you?
I’ll tell you why.
Because sometimes we understand that our inability to accept and live resignedly in the world we’ve been born into is chemical and personal and that we need help integrating…